Collaborative learning is an effective teaching strategy that allows students to work together in a group to achieve a common goal. It is a learning style that encourages teamwork and social interaction. When kids work together in collaborative groups, they can ask each other questions, share ideas and give feedback to direct their own learning. We will see the effectiveness of collaborative learning in coding and robotics.
Collaborative learning works best in a small, pre-selected team.
This approach has proven over time to be highly beneficial for students of all ages, especially in subjects like coding and robotics, which require logical thinking, problem-solving skills, and creativity.
During some of our bootcamps in coding and robotics, we have kids paired in subgroups and are asked to share ideas together to come up with a solution to what we taught them.
It amazes us when we begin to assess their group work because every one of them contributed to the activity. This allows the kids to think critically even outside coding activities.
Although, collaborative learning in coding and robotics can be accomplished in various ways, such as through group projects, peer reviews, and discussion workshops. Here are some of the benefits of collaborative learning in coding and robotics for kids:
The Benefits of Collaborative Learning in Coding and Robotics for Kids
#1. IMPROVES PROBLEM-SOLVING SKILLS
Collaborative learning enables kids to learn from each other and explore different ways of solving problems.
They can share their diverse ideas and learn to compromise, negotiate, and make decisions as a team, which develops their critical thinking and problem-solving abilities.
Working through a problem or an assignment as a group can help students develop their own problem-solving skills or aid professionals in finding new ways to handle different types of situations at work.
#2. ENHANCES CREATIVITY
When children work in groups, they are exposed to different views, approaches, and ideas, which enhances their creativity.
Collaborating with other students can spark new ideas and bring more perspectives to the project’s design.
#3. IMPROVES COMMUNICATION SKILLS
Collaborative learning provides an opportunity for students to share their ideas and communicate effectively with their peers. They will learn to listen, ask questions, and provide constructive feedback that will improve their communication skills.
#4. FOSTERS TEAMWORK
By working as a team, kids learn to value and respect each other’s strengths, weaknesses, and roles. They can leverage their strengths and compensate for their weaknesses by working collectively to achieve the project’s goals.
This instills a sense of teamwork, boosting their confidence and self-esteem.
5. STRENGTHENS LEARNING
Collaborative learning provides a conducive environment for students to learn collaboratively. When working together, groups can strengthen their understanding of concepts, as each member contributes their perspective and reinforces the other’s understanding.
Why use collaborative learning?
Research shows that educational experiences that are active, social, contextual, engaging, and student-owned lead to deeper learning.
The benefits of collaborative learning include:
- Development of higher-level thinking, oral communication, self-management, and leadership skills.
- Promotion of student-faculty interaction.
- Increase in student retention, self-esteem, and responsibility.
- Exposure to and an increase in understanding of diverse perspectives.
- Preparation for real-life social and employment situations.
Collaborative learning can occur peer-to-peer or in larger groups.
Peer learning, or peer instruction, is a type of collaborative learning that involves students working in pairs or small groups to discuss concepts or find solutions to problems.
Similar to the idea that two or three heads are better than one, educational researchers have found that through peer instruction, students teach each other by addressing misunderstandings.
8 Strategies to Build on Kids Collaboration in the Classroom
1. Deliberately select which students will work together.
Left to their own devices, students will sort themselves into groups of friends who share common bonds. However, when a teacher creates groupings, he or she can match students by strengths and weaknesses, deliberately mixing ability, diversity, and social ability.
2. Size the groups for maximum effectiveness
If a group is too small, ideas and discussion may not be diverse or lively enough; if too large, some students won’t get involved. The optimum group size tends to be four to five.
3. Teach your students how to listen to one another
Among young learners, active listening isn’t a natural skill. Taking time to discuss and practice listening skills with your students – teaching them to make eye contact, avoid interruption, and repeat important points – has both short and long-term benefits.
4. Set the rules of language and collaboration
There will always be one or two students in each group who will be more likely to take the lead – or take over.
Take the time to teach students how to clarify issues, how to paraphrase, how to disagree constructively, and how to build on what others have contributed.
5. Make goals and expectations clear
Specific goals and expectations are important. If students are not clear on the goals they are expected to meet, group work has the potential to trail off into socialization or apathy.
6. Assign roles to the members of each group
With roles deligated, students are able to better understand what is expected of them.
With roles like a leader (directs the group’s actions for the day), recorder (takes notes and does all writing), encourager (enables discussion and gives positive feedback), and checker (checks the work and hands it in), it’s clear how each student needs to fulfill his or her responsibilities.
7. Use real-world problems, not imaginary ones
With practical, real-world assignments, students find information through research and forming real opinions.
If you find a strategy that they feel involved in – an environmental issue, a recent Supreme Court case, or a complicated social issue – they will take more ownership of the project.
Even better, select a problem from the student’s own community and challenge them to solve it.
8. Consider giving each group a different task
Delegating tasks gives each group a sense of importance and emphasizes the fact that large problems are solved by people working together.
By solving different pieces of an issue, your student groups will have a more personalized learning experience and will better refrain from unwell competition or “stealing” each other’s work.
In conclusion, collaborative learning in coding and robotics is a great way for kids to maximize their learning potential while having fun.
It creates a supportive environment that encourages teamwork, communication, problem-solving, and creativity.
It is an excellent way to prepare kids for the future, which will require them to work with others to achieve their goals.
You can see our programs for coding and robotics classes.
Frequently Asked Questions
The benefits of collaborative learning include the development of higher-level thinking, oral communication, self-management, and leadership skills. Increases student retention, self-esteem, and responsibility.
Coding and Robotics develop and teach skills in analytical, critical, practical, and creative thinking. Kids with robotics and coding knowledge and training know how to and can actually think in ways that many cannot.
The Coding and Robotics subject is aimed at guiding and preparing learners to solve problems, think critically, work collaboratively and creatively, function in a digital and information-driven world, apply digital and ICT skills, and transfer these skills to solve everyday problems and their possibilities.
Studies have shown that compared to individual learning, collaborative learning provides students the opportunity to discuss and have a higher level of thinking, and information can also be memorized for a longer time.
Deliberately select which students will work together, Size the groups for maximum effectiveness, Teach your students how to listen to one another, Set the rules of language and collaboration, Make goals and expectations clear, Assign roles to the members of each group, Use real-world problems, not imaginary ones, Consider giving each group a different task.
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